Each year, the Youth Frontiers Character Award honors students who stand out as exceptional leaders among their peers. During the 2016-17 school year, we honored two students with this award including Hannah Merlo, who at the time was a senior at Waterford Union High School.READ MORE
By Sarah Aadland, Doing Good Together™
Even when you’re doing your best to keep things simple, family life can be full at best. Too often it’s downright frazzled and unruly. Most weeks, it feels as though my family is racing in too many directions. And we’re not alone.
I catch the knowing, what-have-we-signed-up-for smiles from other parents during pick-up and drop-off times. Someone I know shares one of those meme’s touting all of the reasons dance or soccer or whatever is worth the time and sacrifice. The truth is, we all have different thresholds of feeling busy and overwhelmed.
My own family met ours this fall. And we made a few tweaks that lightened the load. The most useful tool we adopted was the weekly family meeting.
By Sarah Gavigan, Youth Frontiers Communications Specialist
It’s September, and we could not be more excited. We enter the 2017-18 school year with the momentum of last propelling us forward. We are honored to have worked with 126,934 students and educators on 861 retreats in 2016-17. This year, we aim to facilitate 873 retreats to reach 128,001 individuals – we hope that “1” is you.
Speaking up about what matters to you almost always requires a lot of courage. Unfortunately, speaking up does not always mean that you will be heard – it can be challenging and often times messy. It’s entirely possible that those who we hope hear us most are either unresponsive or uninterested in hearing what we have to say. It’s also possible that, despite our best intentions, our communication will miss the mark.READ MORE
A positive community of educators within a school has a powerful effect on the students who learn there. Individually, teachers contribute to that positive environment by exhibiting and modeling an optimistic outlook and can-do attitude. An understanding of the role that emotions play in learning can lay the foundation for positive and productive interactions with students, colleagues, administrators and parents. As neuroscientist Richard Davidson explains in his book “The Emotional Life of Your Brain,” “Emotion works with cognition in an integrated and seamless way to enable us to navigate the world of relationships, work, and spiritual growth.”
The Teachers’ Lounge, a Youth Frontiers podcast hosted by Sally Koering, dives into meaningful topics relevant to teachers, parents and those invested in the growth and well–being of young people. Our 15th episode features a conversation with Chris Pears, an educator and pioneer of career-oriented curriculum in our schools with an emphasis on incorporating soft skills in the classroom.
By Joe Cavanaugh, Founder and CEO
More than 20 years ago, I was leading a Youth Frontiers Wisdom Retreat for Kennedy High School in Bloomington, Minn. For me, it was a typical day at work. I met some great students. Along with the other YF staff that day, we led the 12th-graders through the retreat as they slowly left their comfort zones. They listened to our stories of overcoming obstacles, discussed their school’s challenges in small groups and, eventually, shared carefully chosen words of responsibility and commitment in front of their classmates at the end of the retreat.READ MORE
The turning of seasons from the sleepy cold of winter to the sunshine, warmth and possibility of spring means many things to Midwesterners. For many of us, it reintroduces the season of a quick bike trip to a favorite local brewery or food truck, a Sunday afternoon drive with the windows rolled down and the soundtrack of our adolescence playing in the background and, of course,the return of the much beloved grill days! READ MORE
Most of us find that when we can stay connected to our internal fountain of well-being, it overflows onto our children and we’re more patient, loving, joyful parents. To love our children unconditionally, we need to keep our own pitchers full so we can keep pouring as needed. Quite simply, we can only give what we have inside. And even if parenting is the most meaningful part of your life, it still requires a whole lot of giving.READ MORE